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MarketScreener Homepage  >  Equities  >  London Stock Exchange  >  J Sainsbury plc    SBRY   GB00B019KW72

J SAINSBURY PLC

(SBRY)
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J Sainsbury : Walmart mulls stock market listing for UK arm Asda

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05/14/2019 | 07:57pm EDT
FILE PHOTO - Shopping trolleys are seen outside a branch of ASDA in Altrincham.

LONDON (Reuters) - Walmart, the world's biggest retailer, said it is considering a stock market listing for its British supermarket arm Asda, whose attempt to combine with rival Sainsbury's was blocked by the UK regulator last month.

Judith McKenna, the Walmart International CEO, told Asda managers at an event in Leeds, northern England, on Tuesday: "While we are not rushing into anything, I want you to know that we are seriously considering a path to an IPO - a public listing - to strengthen your long-term success."

But she cautioned that any preparations for an IPO would "take years", according to comments released by Asda afterwards.

Britain's competition regulator ruled Sainsbury's 7.3 billion pound ($9.4 billion) takeover of Asda could not proceed, blocking one potential exit route for Walmart from the UK.

The decision prompted analysts to speculate that Walmart would try to sell Asda to private equity or consider a stock market listing for the business, which it paid 6.7 billion pounds to acquire in 1999.

McKenna's comments are the first time Walmart has publicly addressed its future strategy for Asda since the Sainsbury's deal collapsed.

"Walmart does not have a one-size-fits-all approach to operating its international markets, but a consistent focus on strong local businesses powered by Walmart," she said.

Asda has reported seven consecutive quarters of like-for-like sales growth thanks to a strategy focused on lower prices, more innovation in own-brand products, better store standards and improvements in its e-commerce operations.

Monthly industry data produced by researcher Kantar indicates that Asda will likely report an eighth quarter of growth when it updates on trading on Thursday.

CEO Roger Burnley told managers at the Leeds meeting there would be 80 million pounds of price cuts throughout the rest of 2019.

Asda's strategy is working, he said, but noted it would be harder to deliver the strategy at the same pace without the synergies that the Sainsbury's deal would have provided.

(Reporting by James Davey; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
J SAINSBURY PLC 1.06% 195.95 Delayed Quote.-26.11%
WALMART INC. -0.03% 112.02 Delayed Quote.20.26%
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Financials (GBP)
Sales 2020 29 009 M
EBIT 2020 1 003 M
Net income 2020 436 M
Debt 2020 1 072 M
Yield 2020 5,42%
P/E ratio 2020 10,7x
P/E ratio 2021 9,96x
EV / Sales2020 0,19x
EV / Sales2021 0,17x
Capitalization 4 317 M
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Mean consensus HOLD
Number of Analysts 19
Average target price 233,58  GBp
Last Close Price 195,80  GBp
Spread / Highest target 40,4%
Spread / Average Target 19,3%
Spread / Lowest Target -8,07%
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Managers
NameTitle
Michael Andrew Coupe Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director
David Alan Tyler Chairman
Simon John Roberts Director-Retail & Operations
Kevin O'Byrne Chief Financial Officer & Director
Richard Philip Newsome Director-Digital & Technology
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